Superfast broadband could boost business in Fair Isle

Superfast broadband could boost business in Fair Isle

Funding from Community Broadband Scotland (CBS) is set to improve local business by allowing one of the most northerly inhabited islands in the UK to gain superfast broadband.

The Scottish Government initiative, which is delivered by Highlands and Island Enterprise (HIE), has awarded £247,000 to Fair Isle.

Fair Isle Broadband Company (FIBC) and CBS have been working together to find potential solutions to improve broadband speeds for the community, who are currently served by the Fair Isle BT Exchange Activate with speeds of 0.5mbps.

The funding from CBS will hopefully bring a self-sustaining broadband solution to the community, boasting speeds in excess of 30mbps and boosting the local economy.

 “We’re delighted to be receiving funding from Community Broadband Scotland to take our community broadband project to the next stage,” says Brian Smith, a Fair Isle resident who has spearheaded the project.

“This will utterly transform the lives of the people who live here, from those running their own businesses, to our local school, our public services and to the tourists who visit. 

“I also believe this project will help make Fair Isle a more attractive place to live and help turn around the decline in population bring about a more sustainable and connected community.”

Zoe Laird, Director of Community Broadband Scotland, also commented: “Thanks to the communities determination and support from project partners we are delighted to provide funding to secure robust superfast broadband which will create more opportunity for people to work, visit, learn and live on the Fair Isle.”